Homemade Magic Shell

Remember Magic Shell? When I was a kid, Magic Shell was the only reason it was forgiveable that my beloved grandmother bought only vanilla ice cream. She always kept it on hand and I would cover a scoop in Magic Shell to the point where the bowl was about half ice cream and half chocolate. This would, of course, horrify my mother, but that's what grandparents are for, right?

As an adult, I rarely let myself enjoy such decadence; the voice inside my head telling me I can't have it. I think it may actually be my mom's voice and for some reason, I actually listen to it (though it's still her voice from the 80s; her pantry currently consists of a level of junk food that would boggle my 10-year-old mind). This does not make Mr. Eats happy at all, as he would gleefully eat a Willy Wonka-style diet of Nerds and chocolate bars all day every day.

So when I saw that The Chubby Vegetarian posted about homemade Magic Shell with just two ingredients, I was intrigued (and Mr. Eats was excited, to say the least). I admit I was actually dubious, but a friend donated (and delivered!) the coconut oil needed to go with the chocolate and in seconds, I had Magic Shell.



I cannot express enough how amazing this stuff is. All I did was toss a handful of Ghirardelli chocolate chips (60% cacao) in a small glass bowl with 1/2 a tablespoon of the coconut oil and a sprinkle of sea salt and after microwaving, stirring, and pouring over my ice cream, I had a fantastic treat. That amount was plenty for two very decadent bowls of ice cream, too. The Chubby Vegetarian's recipe would probably make 6-8 servings for conservative types. You can find his recipe here.

A couple of notes: The 60% cacao chocolate was perfect for the true Magic Shell experience. I made a milk chocolate version, too, but it was just not the same. Also, it hardens at room temperature because of the coconut oil, so you don't have to store it in the fridge; you just have to reheat it every time you want to pour it.

And now for the part you don't want to read (in the Grammy Eats voice): this stuff isn't just junk food. It's bad for you. Sure, you can use good chocolate and cocoa but it's still roughly 1/3 coconut oil, which has just about the highest amount of saturated fat of all the vegetable oils. It has higher saturated fat than butter, but other factors make it slightly less bad than animal-derived fats. More information here. So it should definitely be just an occasional treat. Yes, this is directed at you, Mr. Eats!

9 thoughts on “Homemade Magic Shell

  1. ooh, this is very intriguing. love the idea of being able to make a less-processed, more-natural, magic shell at home. question - where have you found coconut oil in nashville? whole foods? turnip truck? trader joe's? i'll definitely have to try this soon!

    1. Post author

      All those places and Publix, too! My friend got her coconut oil at Whole Foods, but it is definitely at Trader Joe's, Turnip Truck, and Publix as well.

    2. I've gotten Coconut Oil at the International Market at the Farmer's Market and at K&S, probably will save you several $$.

      Hm, I wonder how the risk/benefit weighs out between going with something that's less processed but has high saturated fat, vs. the version made with ingredients you can pronounce?

  2. i feel kind of guilty...i've known of this delicious two-ingredient recipe for some time, and it didn't occur to me to share it with you. however, you should also feel guilty for making me crave it. i like to stud magic shell with salty peanuts. i know, right?

  3. Shanna

    I hate to break it to you but coconut oil is actually healthy. VERY healthy. Its one of the best oils for you. Sure its saturated but its a medium chain triglyceride so its a fast acting fat which gives you energy. My family and myself get in a couple tablespoons full of coconut oil a day and none of us are fat, in fact quite the opposite. Very fit and healthy. Coconut oil has gotten a bad rap because of other fast foods and junk foods with saturated fats but coconut truly is a superfood. So eat up!!!

  4. James Fiddler

    There is no link between sat fat and heart disease. Rather, sat fats are good for you. In fact, nursing homes are beginning to admeinister 7 tbsp of coconut oil per day to their Alzheimer residents to treat their dementia. Besides, athletes use coconut oil for energy.

  5. I'm going to jump on the Coconut Oil is Healthy band wagon here: it really is. The medium chain fatty acids are perfect brain food, and as James points out, it is used to help treat patients w/Alzheimer's disease. It's really not enough to look at the labels--not all saturated fats are created equal. So, in your bowl of homemade magic shell over ice cream, the "worst offender" is the ice cream.

    Still, my bowl is out, and I'm ready to eat!

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